A Philosophy of Compassion

Hospice care is a philosophy of comprehensive, compassionate care for those in the last six months of life. This expert end-of-life care is provided by a team of professionals to patients wherever they call home – a private residence, assisted living facility, nursing home or one of our three Hospice of Marion County Hospice Houses.

Signs You Need Care
  • Live with a serious or an advanced illness
  • Have had two or more hospitalizations in the past three months
  • Take nine or more scheduled medications daily
  • Have increasing pain and medications are not as effective in controlling pain and symptoms
  • Have treatments that no longer work
  • Feel tired or have shortness of breath
  • Have decreased appetite
  • Have difficulty walking, putting on clothes or using the bathroom
  • Are uncertain about treatment options and decisions
Benefits of Care
  • Control over your healthcare decisions
  • Additional expert care and support for you and your family
  • Enhanced understanding, comfort, wellness, dignity and peace of mind
  • Avoid unnecessary hospitalizations and multiple physician visits
Ask Your Physician
  • How do you expect my condition to change in the next year?
  • What symptoms might I experience?
  • Will I be able to go about my daily routine and care for myself?

Will treatments I am doing or may pursue:

  • Cure or slow down my illness or instead focus on managing my symptoms and quality of life?
  • Increase or decrease my pain?
  • Make me feel sick?

Individualized Care Plans

Each hospice patient has an interdisciplinary care team working with them and their physician in creating an individualized care plan specifying how a patient wants to live and be cared for at the end of their lives. Most patients are cared for in the comfort of their own homes with medications, medical equipment and supplies delivered to the patient’s door. For management of acute symptoms, patients may have care at one of our three Hospice Houses. Once symptoms are under control, some may return home.

Care Team

Hospice care is a holistic approach centered on a patient’s whole being and includes family and loved ones. Based on the needs of the patient, their hospice care team may include:

  • Hospice and palliative-trained physicians
  • Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRNs)
  • Registered Nurses (RNs)
  • Licensed Practical Nurses (LPNs)
  • Certified Nursing Assistants (CNAs)
  • Specialists in respiratory, speech, occupational and physical therapies
  • Durable medical equipment and supplies specialists
  • Clinical pharmacists, pharmacists and pharmacy technicians
  • Licensed social workers
  • Licensed grief counselors
  • Chaplains
  • Trained volunteers

Understanding Levels of Hospice Care

Routine Home Care
This is the base level of care under the Medicare Hospice Benefit and is provided at the patient’s place of residence (home, assisted living facility or nursing home, etc.). It includes nursing and physician services, medical social services, certified nursing aide services, counseling services (bereavement, spiritual, dietary, and others as necessary), medications, medical equipment, medical supplies and lab/diagnostic studies that are related to the terminal prognosis and access to trained volunteers.
General Inpatient Care (GIP)

GIP is a higher level of care ordered by a physician when pain or other symptoms cannot be relieved in the patient’s home. It consists of intensive around-the-clock medical, nursing and psychosocial care, similar to an acute hospital or intensive care unit stay and is intended to be short-term with the goal of managing symptoms so the patient can return home with hospice care. At Hospice of Marion County, this level of care is typically provided at one of our Hospice Houses. While receiving GIP care, all charges, including room and board, are covered by Medicare, Medicaid and many private health insurance plans.

Routine Inpatient Care at a Hospice House

This care is ordered by a hospice physician once it is determined a patient’s symptoms can be managed in another setting. Once managed, GIP care is discontinued, and the patient is transferred to a routine level of care meaning the patient’s needs can be managed in their residence or other setting with hospice support. If the patient remains in the Hospice House after changing to Routine Care, Medicare, Medicaid and supplemental insurance plans will no longer cover room and board charges. Patient responsibility for room and board charges of $180/day begins the day after Routine Care begins. If finances are of concern, our Finance Department can work with patients and families on payment options.

Crisis Care

A higher level of care ordered by a hospice physician and provided when the patient shows a need for skilled (requiring care of a licensed health professional) interventions for pain and symptom management in their place of residence. Crisis Care is for a limited time and must meet certain criteria set by Medicare. Crisis Care staff care for the patient and provide education to the patient’s family until the symptoms are under control. Once symptoms are managed, the level of care return to Routine Care.

Respite Care

Short-term, temporary care up to five days, provided at a contracted, skilled nursing home to allow caregivers to rest or to get away for a short period of time. Once the respite period ends, the patient returns home. If the respite stay exceeds five days, the patient or representative will be financially responsible to pay for any additional respite days.

Inpatient Initiative (IPI) Care

This care is when a patient receives hospice care for a short time in a hospital due to lack of availability of Hospice House beds in the county or the patient is imminently dying and the family requests it. Caregivers must be aware hospice is a discharge plan and transfer to a Hospice House will occur as soon as possible. Remaining in the hospital for an extended time is not an option. IPI can only be provided to patients who have Medicare/Medicaid as their primary payer source. Exceptions to this must be discussed with the Hospice of Marion County medical director.

Call Hospice of Marion County 24/7 to discuss your questions and concerns
at (352) 873-7415.

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